Mortgage Applications Surge, Purchases at Three-Year High

by devteam May 8th, 2013 | Share

While refinancing drove mortgage originations,rna small uptick was enough to send purchase applications to a three year high</strongaccording to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association's (MBA) Weekly MortgagernApplications Survey for the week ended May 3. </p

MBA’s Market Composite Index, a measurernof all mortgage volume, rose 7.0 percent on both seasonally adjusted andrnunadjusted basis from the week ended April 26. rn The seasonally adjusted PurchasernIndex increased 2 percent from the previous week and reached the highest levelrnsince May 2010.   On an unadjusted basis the Purchase Index was up 3rnpercent from the week before and was 12 percent higher than a year earlier.  </p

Refinancing surged during the week,rnreflecting the run of 2013 interest rate lows ahead of Friday’s Employment Data.  The MBA’s RefinancingrnIndex was up 8 percent from the previous week, reaching a level last seen inrnJanuary.  Conventional refinancing rosern8.8 percent and the government index was up 5.7 percent.  Applications for refinancing represented 76rnpercent of all mortgage volume and regular refinancing products reclaimed somernbusiness from the Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP); its share droppedrnfrom 34 to 30 percent.</p

Therngovernment share of purchase applications declined to 29.1 percent, a two yearrnlow.  Not only were average FHA interest rates were the only ones to increase, but the program continues to lose ground against Conventional loans due to the growing disparity in mortgage insurance premiums.  The average rate for FHA-backed 30-yearrnfixed-rate mortgages (FRM) rate rose by a single basis point to 3.35 percent butrnpoints jumped from 0.37 to 0.57 and the effective rate increased. </p

Thernaverage contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages decreasedrnto 3.59 percent, the lowest raternsince December 2012, from 3.60 percent, with pointsrnincreasing to 0.33 from 0.30.  The effective rate increased.  The jumbo 30-year FRM, with loan balancesrngreater than $417,500, declined from 3.80 percent with 0.29 point to 3.79rnpercent with 0.20 point and the effective rate decreased.</p

Bothrn15-year FRM and the 5/1 adjustable rate mortgages (ARMs) set new MBA surveyrnlows.  The 15-year rate declined fromrn2.84 percent to 2.81 percent while points increased to 0.29 from 0.26.  The 5/1 ARM was down to 2.53 percent withrn0.15 point from 2.55 percent with 0.22 point. rnThe effective rate for both loan types decreased.   </p

Rates arernquoted for loans with 80 percent loan-to-value ratios and points include thernorigination fee.</p

MBA’s survey covers over 75 percent of all U.S. retailrnresidential mortgage applications, and has been conducted weekly sincern1990.  Respondents include mortgage bankers, commercial banks andrnthrifts.  Base period and value for all indexes is March 16, 1990=100.</p


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About the Author


Steven A Feinberg (@CPAsteve) of Appletree Business Services LLC, is a PASBA member accountant located in Londonderry, New Hampshire.

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